Search found 166 matches

by robphoto
Mon Jun 29, 2020 6:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which College degrees are worthwhile?
Replies: 177
Views: 10187

Re: Which College degrees are worthwhile?

Somewhere up in the replies, it was noted that your working life is a marathon, not a sprint. So, you've really got to like running (or whatever the activity of the field is). If you don't find writing code enjoyable, you probably shouldn't sign up to be a programmer because it's a hot field. I sta...
by robphoto
Sun Jun 28, 2020 10:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which College degrees are worthwhile?
Replies: 177
Views: 10187

Re: Which College degrees are worthwhile?

Somewhere up in the replies, it was noted that your working life is a marathon, not a sprint. So, you've really got to like running (or whatever the activity of the field is). If you don't find writing code enjoyable, you probably shouldn't sign up to be a programmer because it's a hot field. I star...
by robphoto
Fri Jun 26, 2020 9:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is the single best piece of exercise equipment you bought for your home?
Replies: 221
Views: 11409

Re: What is the single best piece of exercise equipment you bought for your home?

For me, it's my accountability partner (wife)

We do the J&J 7 minute workout app (which after a while is 3 cycles, closer to a half hour) every other day, and doing it with someone else makes it happen, rather than deciding not to do it on any particular day.
by robphoto
Sat Jun 13, 2020 8:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: caulk puncture tool ?
Replies: 71
Views: 3779

Re: caulk puncture tool ?

I like to use a 16d or so double headed nail (the kind that use use to nail something temporarily; the lower head is against the wood, the upper head can be grabbed by a hammer claw). When you put it in the caulk tip after use, you've got something to grab onto to pull in out by.
by robphoto
Fri May 29, 2020 11:57 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help checking over retirement path plan
Replies: 5
Views: 691

Re: Help checking over retirement path plan

Perhaps after 18 years of teaching, she will be ready to retire, and you might want to work toward affording that earlier retirement. Once the kids are out of college, those could be prime years for travel or other experiences, at the price of a lower pension.
by robphoto
Wed May 27, 2020 10:59 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bogleheads: What is your largest single stock holding? (if any)
Replies: 79
Views: 4251

Re: Bogleheads: What is your largest single stock holding? (if any)

Johnson & Johnson, about 2%. Sentimental favorite, my Dad worked for them 1950's into 60's.
by robphoto
Sun May 10, 2020 7:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PPP, 'owner compensation replacement', 75% on payroll. math does not seem to work. what am I missing?
Replies: 24
Views: 2034

Re: PPP, 'owner compensation replacement', 75% on payroll. math does not seem to work. what am I missing?

I have done the calculation for myself, and it is as people have written above: For a sole proprietor: - they will loan you 2.5 x your monthly net profit (per line 31 Schedule C) - they will forgive 8 weeks of net profit as your salary - if you rent a facility for your business you can also get forg...
by robphoto
Wed May 06, 2020 9:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone receive PPP loan as a NEW businesses/independent contractor?
Replies: 11
Views: 594

Re: Anyone receive PPP loan as a NEW businesses/independent contractor?

My understanding is that the amount that will be forgiven for a sole proprietor is 8 weeks of your profit (not two months) plus rent and utilities that you pay for the business. However, the amount they loan you is up to two and a half times your monthly profit. Also, at least 75% of the forgiveness...
by robphoto
Tue May 05, 2020 7:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car rolled backwards in drive. Operator error
Replies: 23
Views: 2582

Re: Car roll-backwards in drive.

Also turn tires such that car does not go straight back. Facing uphill, point away from curb. Facing downhill, point toward curb. The only difference is if you're facing uphill and there is no curb; in that case you should turn the wheels toward the curb so the car rolls back off the road instead o...
by robphoto
Tue May 05, 2020 7:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taking a pay cut to get off work earlier?
Replies: 30
Views: 1693

Re: Taking a pay cut to get off work earlier?

Definitely be sure that you can afford it, but it sounds like a real improvement to your life. Doesn't sound good to spend those years in a haze of tiredness, not seeing your wife.
by robphoto
Thu Apr 30, 2020 9:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PPP Loan ethics
Replies: 56
Views: 3823

Re: PPP Loan ethics

Personally, I would opt to withdraw the loan application if there is any nagging guilt associated with it. Only the OP can determine that. I talked to a self-employed business owner who bragged about getting his PPP loan and in the next breath mentioned large purchases unrelated to employee payroll...
by robphoto
Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 20 AMP Plugs
Replies: 31
Views: 2113

Re: 20 AMP Plugs

I know some big window air conditioners use it. Some 2000 watt photography lights had that plug. The outlets have a slot on one side like a sideways "T" to accommodate both regular and 20 amp plugs . Here's a picture of the outlet:https://www.homedepot.com/p/Leviton-20-Amp-Commercial-Grade-Duplex-Ou...
by robphoto
Sat Apr 04, 2020 8:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Amazon Prime (free) movies y'd recommend ?
Replies: 78
Views: 6692

Re: What Amazon Prime (free) movies y'd recommend ?

Just watched a couple of fun Cary Grant movies there: To Catch a Thief (with Grace Kelly) and His Girl Friday (with Rosalind Russell)
by robphoto
Sun Mar 22, 2020 11:03 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalancing plan: is this reasonable? (do it once per month)
Replies: 18
Views: 878

Re: Rebalancing plan: is this reasonable? (do it once per month)

I have also considered going to monthly or quarterly rebalance, to avoid having to keep checking as the market thrashes around. Based on that Vanguard paper cited, it makes just a small difference. The main benefit is to avoid drifting well away from your preferred allocation.
by robphoto
Sun Mar 22, 2020 7:07 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should I have seen this coming?
Replies: 107
Views: 7436

Re: Should I have seen this coming?

I understand but what’s the downside on pulling money out for 3 months? Because if we pulled money out for three months every time there was a threat of trouble in the world, we’d be pulling money out a lot. Which events are the real deal and which ones are false alarms? Very clear in hindsight, 0%...
by robphoto
Wed Mar 18, 2020 12:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What very simple computer system or ? would you recommend?
Replies: 12
Views: 610

Re: What very simple computer system or ? would you recommend?

I use an iMac, but I would consider one of those Windows all-in-ones you can get at Best Buy or wherever for Lenovo, HP, etc. You could get a pretty nice one for less than 1000., with a 21.5 or 24 or 27" screen. Alternatively, a big 15.6 or 17" laptop, with a solid state drive, if you want to be abl...
by robphoto
Tue Mar 10, 2020 6:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why 5% Rebalancing Bands Are Wrong
Replies: 65
Views: 5069

Re: Why 5% Rebalancing Bands Are Wrong

There's a Vanguard white paper talking about various approaches and frequencies for rebalancing, deals with threshold vs. time, or using both, etc.

https://personal.vanguard.com/pdf/ISGPORE.pdf
by robphoto
Sat Feb 29, 2020 9:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moto g6 play constantly updating and slow
Replies: 5
Views: 283

Re: Moto g6 play constantly updating and slow

I have the moto G6, not the play, but I had a problem with it seeming to just freeze for a few seconds in the middle of apps, etc. This happened after the system updated to more recent Android version. What fixed it was to reset the phone and start over, it's been fine since. Your mileage may vary.
by robphoto
Thu Feb 27, 2020 8:20 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 38 yr old having 2nd thoughts...
Replies: 93
Views: 10852

Re: 38 yr old having 2nd thoughts...

what has phased me is that i'm not being aggressive enough why do I even have bonds when i'm 25 years from retirement? Here's a quote from vocabulary.com, in case anyone cares: faze/ phase To faze is to disturb, bother, or embarrass, but a phase is a stage or step. It could faze your family if your...
by robphoto
Wed Feb 26, 2020 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: MVNO with Visual Voicemail for Android Moto G6 Play
Replies: 15
Views: 773

Re: MVNO with Visual Voicemail for Android Moto G6 Play

Another vote for Red Pocket. I have the $240./year service that you buy on eBay, mine is the unlimited + 5GB per month on ATT. I have a Moto G6, works fine.
by robphoto
Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How do you objectively set Stock vs Bond Allocation
Replies: 81
Views: 5995

Re: How do you objectively set Stock vs Bond Allocation

As noted above, one could choose an asset allocation based on a set of calculations and assumptions, but whether it works or not for you is probably still a behavioral problem: what you do when things start crashing. If you've got 21 years to retirement, did you have significant assets in 2009, and ...
by robphoto
Fri Feb 14, 2020 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Where can I invest 8,000 cash for a year?
Replies: 14
Views: 1396

Re: Where can I invest 8,000 cash for a year?

Be careful of your zero percent loan. A lot of them are structured so that if you don't pay in full by the due date, you owe credit-card level interest on the loan (like 20 or more percent). If you needed to save up to get the 8,000., and you've got to pay 10,000 back next year, I'd suggest that you...
by robphoto
Thu Feb 13, 2020 11:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: eyeglasses delayed - coronavirus
Replies: 6
Views: 1395

Re: eyeglasses delayed - coronavirus

My Zenni glasses seemed to take a little longer than usual, but they're due tomorrow via FedEx.
by robphoto
Thu Feb 13, 2020 11:24 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Second guessing my asset allocation: Fear of missing out
Replies: 48
Views: 3547

Re: Second guessing my asset allocation: Fear of missing out

Seeing a post asking if one should go to more stocks because of FOMO immediately makes me think it's a sign of a market peak.

Not that it can be predicted reliably!
by robphoto
Thu Feb 13, 2020 11:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $2-2.5M House?
Replies: 77
Views: 7731

Re: $2-2.5M House?

If it will make the difference of the kids being in public school vs. private, that could be 100K a year difference by the time they're in high school, depending on the private school. Still, I would try to list your expenses, assets, and income requirements in the two scenarios (stay or move) to co...
by robphoto
Thu Feb 13, 2020 8:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is the highest expense ratio you willingly pay?
Replies: 123
Views: 8587

Re: What is the highest expense ratio you willingly pay?

VPMAX PRIMECAP at .31, a sentimental favorite.
by robphoto
Wed Feb 12, 2020 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: balancing question with Roth twist
Replies: 11
Views: 453

Re: balancing question with Roth twist

This question only addresses one corner of the whole picture: best way to provide for a down payment. I'd suggest you start with figuring out your current spending, then your proposed spending in California. Maybe go on Zillow or similar and pick a house that is like what you want, and plug the mort...
by robphoto
Wed Feb 12, 2020 12:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why are you holding bonds
Replies: 161
Views: 11710

Re: Why are you holding bonds

We're 60/40 and it feels too conservative, which I think is the natural way to feel after stocks have been doing so well, so that seems about right.
by robphoto
Tue Feb 11, 2020 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 8~ years to retirement, short-term allocation questions
Replies: 3
Views: 553

Re: 8~ years to retirement, short-term allocation questions

Overall, your proposed portfolios combine to be roughly 60/40 stocks/bonds. If you are young enough that you would have to pay a penalty for withdrawing from the retirement accounts, I agree that it makes sense to keep a good cushion in taxable that might be more stable in the near term. If there is...
by robphoto
Tue Feb 11, 2020 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer refuses to put holiday gift on W-2
Replies: 60
Views: 5251

Re: Employer refuses to put holiday gift on W-2

I strongly agree with the people who say report it as other income and don't do anything else. If you send a formal letter to the company, they'll just be annoyed that you're kicking up a fuss. You'll be paying tax on it, seems close enough, let it go!
by robphoto
Thu Feb 06, 2020 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kia Sedona 2nd Row Seats Removable?
Replies: 10
Views: 1929

Re: Kia Sedona 2nd Row Seats Removable?

Here is a video of a guy removing a middle row seat in a 2015 Sedona. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZtoU_lDlK0Y My guess is the new one is similar. The little middle section seat/cupholder console is made to be removable simply by the owner, no tools required. Older (circa 2008) Sedona's had middl...
by robphoto
Thu Feb 06, 2020 8:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: home computer setup - workstation, monitors, etc.
Replies: 4
Views: 754

Re: home computer setup - workstation, monitors, etc.

I like the Ikea Bekant desk, which is motorized up/down. There are a lot of good 27" monitors nowadays, I like the Dell 27" Ultrasharp; if you aren't doing critical photo work you could get a cheaper one that would also work for you. If you want to run two external monitors, you can get a USB-C to d...
by robphoto
Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:42 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA issue. How to fix it? Please help!
Replies: 7
Views: 494

Re: Roth IRA issue. How to fix it? Please help!

I had a very similar issue, needing to change a contribution from a Roth 401K to a Traditional 401K.

I called Vanguard and the person walked me through the letter to send them that made the request in the right form, and the money was moved from one to the other without penalty.
by robphoto
Tue Jan 28, 2020 2:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is the best path to get into MED School for a high school senior?
Replies: 72
Views: 6494

Re: What is the best path to get into MED School for a high school senior?

Brown University also has the program where you are accepted into a program including med school out of high school; a couple of my daughter's friends went into that (very outstanding kids).
by robphoto
Sat Jan 25, 2020 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Outback engine stop/start
Replies: 94
Views: 6319

Re: Subaru Outback engine stop/start

We've driven our Prius V 190,000 with no problem with the starter, etc. from the engine shutoff. I think it's one of those things that seem weird at first, then you forget about it. Our recent rental cars have also had this feature: Ford Escape, Chevy Equinox, and others. In Boston, standing on a ma...
by robphoto
Thu Jan 23, 2020 10:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: App for bodyweight exercise
Replies: 11
Views: 1155

Re: App for bodyweight exercise

We use the 7 Minute Workout, the original version from Johnson & Johnson. Free for iOS and Android. It has the original workout, with optional warmup and cool down, a lot of variations, some with multiple cycles, and you can make your own workouts choosing the exercises, the number of cycles, and th...
by robphoto
Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To repair or not
Replies: 16
Views: 1420

Re: To repair or not

If you're definitely going to get rid of it, I wouldn't spend the money.

If fixing the cosmetics would make you keep it for a couple of years, might be worth it.

Since you say you want a bigger car, you'll probably buy the next car soon, so I wouldn't do it.
by robphoto
Mon Jan 06, 2020 8:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Traveling to Japan for first time
Replies: 44
Views: 2826

Re: Traveling to Japan for first time

One note on Disney Sea-- it can be very crowded, and you will need to get fast passes to get on a reasonable number of rides. I have seen reviews recently saying that some fast passes were only available through an app, not available at the park. Do look into this before you go. Re: currency exchang...
by robphoto
Wed Dec 11, 2019 9:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Microsoft Office [for Mac] 2019; SLOW AS MOLASSES charts?
Replies: 12
Views: 836

Re: Microsoft Office [for Mac] 2019; SLOW AS MOLASSES charts?

Two thoughts:

- can you reinstall Office 2011 and see if it's better?

- I use Open Office on my Mac, and it seems to run well enough; you could try downloading it (it's free, optional donation) and see if its spreadsheet program runs better for you
by robphoto
Sat Nov 30, 2019 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Camera Question
Replies: 69
Views: 2972

Re: Camera Question

Definitely have her try the cameras in a store. I can read reviews extensively, but when I pick up and try the cameras I'll have a visceral preference for one over the other.

Oh, and B&H is rock solid, excellent service. You can call them with questions and talk to someone who knows cameras.
by robphoto
Wed Nov 27, 2019 9:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would you replace this laptop?
Replies: 30
Views: 2444

Re: Would you replace this laptop?

You might consider the $699. previous model MacBook Air that's on sale now, or the $899. current model (both at Amazon)

Very light, you can FaceTime on it, use your USB disk drive when you need that.
by robphoto
Tue Nov 26, 2019 11:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DSLRs: canon 5d IV vs ?
Replies: 88
Views: 4354

Re: DSLRs: canon 5d IV vs ?

The sensor resolution is less in crop mode, but is the viewfinder (or rear lcd) resolution sufficiently lower than either FF or crop sensor resolution that the view would be indistinguishable? The display looks the same when you're in crop mode, so much so that I have more than once made the error ...
by robphoto
Tue Nov 26, 2019 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DSLRs: canon 5d IV vs ?
Replies: 88
Views: 4354

Re: DSLRs: canon 5d IV vs ?

The sensor resolution is less in crop mode, but is the viewfinder (or rear lcd) resolution sufficiently lower than either FF or crop sensor resolution that the view would be indistinguishable? The display looks the same when you're in crop mode, so much so that I have more than once made the error ...
by robphoto
Tue Nov 26, 2019 8:48 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Investment issues for dying Mother
Replies: 18
Views: 1679

Re: Investment issues for dying Mother

I don't see why the OP feels the need to move the money now. There has to be a lot of other complexity to deal with, like making sure the health directives, estate planning, etc. are in order. The current allocation is reasonable, you're only talking about a year or so (one never knows with these th...
by robphoto
Mon Nov 25, 2019 6:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice on homeowner insurance on first home
Replies: 18
Views: 1668

Re: Advice on homeowner insurance on first home

We've used Amica for five generations, and they've been good. I'd still get quotes from a few of the main players, though, because the rates can vary a lot between companies depending on your situation. Many you can do online or over the phone. Also, it won't necessarily cost more through an agent, ...
by robphoto
Wed Nov 20, 2019 9:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DSLRs: canon 5d IV vs ?
Replies: 88
Views: 4354

Re: DSLRs: canon 5d IV vs ?

If you can afford it, I would get whatever she wants; maybe go to a camera store with her and let her have fun trying out the cameras. I needed to get a new backup camera recently, and I bought the Canon EOS R (new mirrorless) instead of the 5D Mark IV, mainly for the electronic viewfinder, ability...
by robphoto
Wed Nov 20, 2019 8:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DSLRs: canon 5d IV vs ?
Replies: 88
Views: 4354

Re: DSLRs: canon 5d IV vs ?

If you can afford it, I would get whatever she wants; maybe go to a camera store with her and let her have fun trying out the cameras. I needed to get a new backup camera recently, and I bought the Canon EOS R (new mirrorless) instead of the 5D Mark IV, mainly for the electronic viewfinder, ability ...
by robphoto
Mon Nov 18, 2019 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2018 RAV4 Hybrid. Any known problem?
Replies: 13
Views: 1575

Re: 2018 RAV4 Hybrid. Any known problem?

The new series RAV4 Hybrid (2019) gets higher mileage: 41 city / 38 Highway vs. 34 city / 30 highway for the previous model.

You may never make up the cost in gas savings, but if you enjoy low fuel usage, it might be a consideration, especially as we're at the end of the 2019 model year.
by robphoto
Tue Nov 12, 2019 12:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard keeps pushing their financial advisors...why?
Replies: 102
Views: 9844

Re: Vanguard keeps pushing their financial advisors...why?

I don't have the link to the particular video, but I know in one of the interviews with John Bogle he mentions that Vanguard's keeping executive compensation secret is one thing he disagrees with.
by robphoto
Tue Nov 05, 2019 8:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone used MySolo401k.com, DiscountSolo401k.com, or Solo401k.com?
Replies: 147
Views: 10661

Re: Has anyone used MySolo401k.com, DiscountSolo401k.com, or Solo401k.com?

I have used the Vanguard Solo 401K. I have both a Roth and Traditional. They will walk you through things over the phone, and have specialists in the small business section who are very knowledgable. As someone mentioned early on, you can go to the max using the employer side contributions, dependin...